Related Companies affiliate, partner pay $145M for Las Olas Square in Fort Lauderdale

Property includes 17-story office tower, three-story office-retail building

Las Olas Square Office (CBRE, iStock)
Las Olas Square Office (CBRE, iStock)

Related Fund Management, an affiliate of Stephen Ross’ Related Companies, and partner CP Group bought Las Olas Square in downtown Fort Lauderdale for $144.5 million.

UPDATED, March 17, 4:29 p.m.: A joint venture among Apollo Global Management, Steelbridge Capital and Square2 Capital sold the two-building office and retail complex spanning a full city block at 515 and 501 East Las Olas Boulevard, according to a news release from the sellers’ broker.

Christian Lee and Andrew Chilgren of CBRE Capital Markets represented the joint venture.

The 267,000-square-foot Las Olas Square consists of a 17-story office tower, called the 515 Building, as well as the adjacent three-story office and retail property, which is called the 501 Building. It includes an attached four-story garage.

The complex is 88 percent leased to 17 tenants, including Truist Bank, coworking provider Spaces and Del Frisco’s Grill restaurant.

Evanston, Illinois-based private equity firm Steelbridge, led by founder and Managing Principal Gavin Campbell, along with its joint venture partners, paid $90 million for the property and additional developable land in 2016. They then renovated interiors and added an outdoor tenant plaza, rebranding the complex from its previous moniker SunTrust Center.

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In January 2021, Steelbridge, along with Apollo Global and Square2, sold the Cypress Financial Center in Fort Lauderdale for $44.2 million.

Coconut Grove-based Square2 is led by Principals Jay Caplin and Mike Manno.

Boca Raton-based CP Group, previously known as Crocker Partners, and New York City-based Related Fund Management plan improvements to the lobby, and outdoor and common areas, as well as a new café, according to their news release.

CP Group, led by Managing Partner Angelo Bianco and partner Chris Eachus, also co-owns the Boca Raton Innovation Campus, along with Rialto Capital Management and DRA Advisors. In December, DRA bought an ownership stake in the property for $320.2 million, marking the largest office deal of 2021. The campus is poised for the addition of multifamily, hotel, medical office and retail development.

New York City-based Related Companies lists Related Fund Management on its website as a third-party investment manager. RFM oversees $10.3 billion in commingled funds and separately managed accounts for pension plans, endowments, sovereign wealth funds and family offices, according to the buyers’ release.

The purchase comes as the Broward County office market still lagged behind that of Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties in the fourth quarter of 2021. The Broward vacancy rate was 16.9 percent, up from 14.7 percent during the fourth quarter of 2020, largely because of new construction, according to a Cushman & Wakefield report.

Office projects recently developed in downtown Fort Lauderdale include The Main Las Olas, a 25-story building completed in late 2020 as part of Stiles and Shorenstein’s larger mixed-use Main Las Olas development.